Hard choices make you grow

by Jay Hiller, November 12, 2022

Photo by Ales Maze on Unsplash

In January someone asked me to facilitate an electronic course that had been created and taught by a friend who had recently passed away. It was an intimidating suggestion. Agreeing meant spending a significant amount of time making sure I understood the course content well enough to present it to other people and dealing with the emotions I had around the whole thing. It was a strange way to grieve and I had imposter syndrome to deal with. It took me about a month of working on it every day to do the learning part and to make my additions to the course materials. It launched for participants in early October. Now they’re almost finished. Here’s what I learned:

  1. I liked the rhythm of getting up every day, learning something and then writing about it a lot, more than I’ve liked any other job I’ve had.
  2. I’m capable of finishing an extended project.
  3. I thought once I had done my studying and writing, that would be the end of the learning for me. I was completely wrong about that. I feel like I’ve been taking an online course from the participants. I didn’t realize how good the assignments and discussion boards my friend had written were until people started responding to them. I thought scoring assignments would be dull. People put a lot of thought into their work and the results are very very good.

What’s the point?

I wouldn’t have learned any of this if I had decided to just bounce between worky-work and my yoga classes, doing whatever I felt like doing, working out, watching movies, reading. I think it’s true in any area. If you allow yourself to get too comfy you stop developing. I keep this quote from an actor, Andre DeShields in my phone. It’s his three cardinal rules. The third one sums up my point.

“Surround yourself with people whose eyes light up when they see you coming. Slowly is the fastest way to get where you want to be. The top of one mountain is the bottom of the next.”

Andre DeShields

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